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Showing posts from October, 2014

Reflection on a Day in Sixth Grade

Today was one of those days in my sixth grade class that I wished I could have recorded.

My students were on fire!

In the past, I've had to spend an inordinate amount of time disciplining students, and although today was not necessarily unique in that sense, it was qualitatively different. Although I had to stop every so often to interrupt one-on-one conversations and small lapses in attention, I began to notice that most of these were not off topic but, instead, were attempts to continue the conversation.

My students had comments, opinions, and questions about the book we're reading for #GRA14, One for the Murphys, and about the social studies lessons related to Early Peoples. I wish I could have recorded their comments (so insightful) and their questions (connected to the topic and digging deeper) so that I could savor the moment, over and over again.

Today I also made a short presentation for teachers at my school about what it means to be a connected educator. And, althoug…

Being a Connected Educator

I am preparing a brief session for teachers at my school on what it means to be a connected educator. I plan to talk about social media in general as a segue to discussing PLN's. I am going to talk about particular sites (Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, etc) by sharing how I use each of these sites to enrich my own learning. I thought this might serve as a useful introduction. My hope is that teachers will participate in an internal Twitter chat to support each other in this process. I am looking for suggestions, cautions, aha moments, reccomendations and any other useful insight you can offer. Pleae leave these in the comments section below. I will share your wisdom with my colleagues.

Why I Became a Teacher

Sometimes I  forget why I became a teacher.  I undervalue my expertise and experience.
I find myself going through the motions of teaching but my heart is not in it.  Something is missing.  I don't feel right.

This often happens when I follow somebody else's ideas or plans that I've had no part in creating.  This happens when my confidence starts to get a little shaky.
I start to question myself. I worry that I'm not doing enough, or the right thing. I worry that I'm too soft or too hard. I forget that teaching is a verb and it doesn't exist in isolation.
When I remember why I'm in the classroom and to whom I'm talking, my confidence returns.  I can see who is in front of me.
My students are whom I see.
I meet them where they are, physically and metaphorically.  I engage them in brief conversations about learning. I provide quick words of encouragement. I give specific feedback in the form of a compliment or a suggestion. I look at a student's work…